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Mary Millais to Sylvia du Maurier - 1890


Letter from Mary Millais to Sylvia du Maurier, 2 April 1890.

[No original available]


2, Palace Gate, Kensington.
April 2 [1890]

My dear Sylvia,
I must send you my very best wishes for your happiness. Papa and Mrs Millar [presumably Trixie, or perhaps her mother-in-law] told me about your engagement. I think you are away being introduced to Mr Davies' family (rather formidable at first when you don't know them) and this is just to give you all good wishes.
Yours very sincerely,
Mary Millais

Peter's comment from the Morgue:

The writer of this was Millais' second daughter, and was at this time 30. She apparently knew the Llewelyn Davieses as well as the du Mauriers. I daresay others may have shared her view that the Llewelyn Davieses were rather formidable until you got to know them: formidable, I imagine, for their all-round ability, and intellect, and perhaps - this is little but a guess - for a sort of extreme goodness and even piety (in a thoroughly underogatory sense of the word) which seems to me to have been characteristic of them and which might have been a shade overwhelming at first acquaintance. They are a very difficult family to "place": I can think of no equivalent to them in any other family I have known in my later years, and from whom one might have got a better idea of what they were.
The visit of Sylvia and Arthur to Kirby lasted a fortnight, at the end of which Sylvia returned to her parents, and wrote the letter which follows, while Arthur went back to Liverpool, having accompanied her on her journey as far as Preston.


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